ECI requests RBI to enhance cash withdrawal limits for candidates in poll-bound states

| Updated: Jan 26, 2017 02:17 IST

New Delhi [India], Jan. 25 (ANI): The Election Commission of India on Wednesday requested the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to enhance the weekly cash withdrawal limit of candidates contesting polls in the five poll-bound states. Citing difficulty the candidates would face to meet their election expenditure, the ECI has written a letter to the RBI to increase the limit from Rs. 24,000 to Rs. 2 lakh. In the letter addressed to RBI Governor Urjit Patel, the ECI said it has been apprised of the problems being faced by the candidates from different political parties due to imposition of limits on cash withdrawals from banks. As per the directions of the ECI, each candidate has to open a separate bank account and all receipts and payments during the entire election process will be made through this account. Since the entire process will most likely last for three to four weeks, the maximum amount the candidates can withdraw is Rs 96,000/- which is much lesser than the stipulated amount of expenditure by the candidates in the states of Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand (Rs. 28 lakh) and Manipur and Goa (Rs. 20 lakh). Stating this, the ECI made this request to the RBI and asked for the facility to be extended till March 11, the day of counting. The letter also added, "Petty and recurring expenditure is generally incurred in cash. The issue is further adversely compounded in rural areas where banking facilities are not available or negligible. (ANI)